Prof. Rena I. Steinzor

University of Maryland School of Law and President, Center for Progressive Reform

Rena Steinzor is a Professor at the University of Maryland School of Law and teaches an environmental survey course, as well as offerings in risk assessment, critical issues in law and science, legal methods, contracts, and an introduction to the administrative system. During the course of her academic career, Professor Steinzor has written extensively on efforts to reinvent environmental regulation in the United States, the use and misuse of science in environmental policy making, and the devolution of legal and administrative authority to the states.

Professor Steinzor edited the book A New Progressive Agenda for Public Health and the Environment (Carolina Academic Press 2005) with Professor Christopher Schroeder of the Duke Law School.  The book proposes an alternative set of values and principles that should guide efforts to reform environmental law.  She worked with Professor Wendy Wagner of the University of Texas School of Law, to edit a book of essays by prominent academics entitled Rescuing Science from Politics (Cambridge University Press, 2005) writing an introduction and conclusion summarizing the issues and recommendations suggested by the book.  Professor Steinzor's book entitled Mother Earth and Uncle Sam: How Pollution and Hollow Government Hurt Our Kids was published by the University of Texas Press in the fall of 2007.

Professor Steinzor is the president of the Center for Progressive Reform (CPR) (, a think tank comprised of some 52 member scholars from universities across the United States. CPR is committed to developing and sharing knowledge and information, with the ultimate aim of preserving the fundamental value of the life and health of human beings and the natural environment. One component of CPR's mission is to circulate academic papers, studies, and other analyses that promote public policy based on the multiple social values that motivated the enactment of our nation's health, safety and environmental laws. CPR seeks to inform the public about scholarship that envisions government as an arena where members of society choose and preserve their collective values. CPR rejects the idea that government's only function is to increase the economic efficiency of private markets.

Before joining the law school faculty, Professor Steinzor was the partner in charge of the environmental practice at Spiegel & McDiarmid, a Washington D.C. Law firm specializing in the representation of state and local government entities in the energy and environmental areas. Prior to joining the firm, Professor Steinzor was counsel to the Subcommittee on Commerce, Transportation & Tourism of the House Energy & Commerce Committee, which was then chaired by James J. Florio (D-N.J.). She advised the Subcommittee during its consideration of the Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act of 1986 and the Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act of 1986. She also served as an attorney advisor to Commissioner Patricia P. Bailey of the Federal Trade Commission and worked as a consumer protection attorney at the FTC in various staff positions.

  • BA, 1971, University of Wisconsin
  • JD, 1976, Columbia University

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Publications and Multimedia
Agency Enforcement and Prosecution of Regulatory Crimes - Event Audio/Video
Criminal Law and the Administrative State: Defining and Enforcing Regulatory Crimes
June 11, 2014
EPA: An Agency Gone Wild or Just Doing Its Job? - Event Audio/Video
2010 National Lawyers Convention
November 20, 2010